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Title: In media res : the problem of cultural translation of international news in Mumbai, India
Author: Pohjonen, Matti
ISNI:       0000 0004 5346 7309
Awarding Body: SOAS, University of London
Current Institution: SOAS, University of London
Date of Award: 2014
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My thesis is a theoretically driven yet empirically grounded investigation into the problem of cultural translation of international news in Mumbai, India. Underlying it is the assumption that a significant part of what we call international news is composed of a limited amount of original news material - text and pictures - in circulation on any given day. As a consequence of this, news organisations across the world have to routinely rely on news material produced somewhere else for their own coverage of major world events and themes. What we call international news thus largely consists of different kinds of practices through which this limited amount of original text and pictures is re-used in different ways by news producers in other parts of the world. The thesis explores in detail - empirically and theoretically - the different kinds of relationships that are formed with such practices of re-use and their broader significance to international news as a field of study. These questions are investigated in the thesis by looking at four points of entry to the English-language print and online news media in India: (1) a historical analysis of how the relationship between Indian news media and international news has been imagined since the colonial times; (2) the re-use of international news at the biggest English-language tabloid in India; (3) alternative journalistic practices by a popular Indian blog during the Asian tsunami in 2004; and (4) the discourse of international news in the Englishlanguage newspapers since India liberalised its economy in 1991. A key argument of the thesis is that what we broadly call international news should not be seen as a naturalised object of study. On the contrary, it is itself the outcome of different practices of articulation, sometimes antagonistic and contradictory, through which it has been given closure. These points of closure need to be now opened up for critical analysis. The thesis is thus as much about research into this relatively unexplored problem in international news research as it is a critical reflection into the theoretical frames of reference we use to understand news practices and processes in other parts of the world with different cultural, political and social histories and media environments. This critical dialogue between theory and practice of research developed in this thesis I call the problem of cultural translation of international news in Mumbai, India.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available